“LeBron still gets criticism. Jesus still gets criticized.” replied D’Angelo Russell to reporters after the Lakers latest loss, when asked about criticism.
And no rookie has been criticized more this season than 19 year old D’Angelo Russell. During the featured postgame interview, it was obvious that the rookie guard was frustrated, lost and trying his best not to let all the chatter and criticism from outsiders bother him (No, he’s not comparing himself to LeBron and Jesus, he’s just saying everybody gets criticized and he’s no different). And this is usually where a team captain and/or coach will step in and try to help the youngster follow the right path and boost his confidence. Usually! Don’t expect that in LA, especially since his coach is his biggest critic.
Scott, who earned the worst coaching record in franchise history (30-101) after the loss, has been hard on Russell since Summer camp, called him out multiple times during postgame interviews and on Wednesday, he benched the rookie for trying to “take over the game,” which he doesn’t feel Russell is ready for.
“I saw the last couple minutes that he was in that he was really trying to take over the game, and that’s not him yet,” Scott said. “I want the ball to move a little bit. I thought it stuck with him. He tried to make the big shots and things like that. I understand that, but to me, that’s not him right now.
“I love the fact that he has confidence,” Scott added. “When it gets to the point where it’s cockiness, then we’ve got a problem.”
I think the point of no return has already been reached between Russell and Scott. Things may get better but there’s no way you are going to convince me what’s best for Russell and the Lakers is Scott’s methods.
Tonight, Byron Scott broke a tie with George Mikan for the worst coaching record in Lakers history: pic.twitter.com/7bqNmBWmy7
— Baxter Holmes (@Baxter) January 30, 2016